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T-REX: Terrain-induced Rotor Experiment


The Terrain-induced Rotor Experiment (T-REX) is the second phase of a coordinated effort to explore the structure and evolution of atmospheric rotors (intense low-level horizontal vorticies that form along an axis parallel to, and downstream of, a mountain ridge crest) as well as associated phenomena in complex terrain. The initial, exploratory, phase of this effort, the Sierra Rotors Project, completed its Special Observation Period (SOP) in early spring 2004 in Owens Valley, California. Experience gained and data collected in the Phase I SOP have been instrumental in formulating both the sceintific objectives and experimental design of T-REX.

Scientific Objectives

The main scientific objective of T-REX is a comprehensive study of the coupled mountain-wave, rotor, and boundary-layer system. Some complimentary scientific issues include stratospheric-tropospheric exchange and structure and evolution of the complex terrain boundary layer in the absence of rotors. The comprehensive T-REX data sets will also represent a unique test bed for the validation of numerical models, and are expected to be instrumental in achieving further significant improvements in mesoscale and microscale modeling and in the prediction of aviation hazards, downslope windstorms, and aerosol transport and dispersion.

Observational Thrusts

The observational thrusts are two-fold: 1) comprehensive ground-based and airborne, in situ and remote sensing measurements during strongly perturbed conditions favoring rotor formation, and 2) comprehensive observations of complex terrain broundary layer structure and evolution from undisturbed to strongly perturbed conditions.

Data access

Datasets from this project

Additional information

Field catalog
Related links

Temporal coverage

Begin Date 2006-03-01 00:00:00
End Date 2006-04-30 00:00:00

Spatial coverage

Map data from IBCSO, IBCAO, and Global Topography.

Maximum (North) Latitude: 40.00, Minimum (South) Latitude: 34.00
Minimum (West) Longitude: -126.00, Maximum (East) Longitude: -115.00